Illinois Tool Works (ITW) Stock Rating Lowered by Zacks Investment Research

Illinois Tool Works (NYSE:ITW) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “In the last three months, Illinois Tool Works' shares have outperformed the industry. We believe that the company is well positioned to benefit from its solid product portfolio, strengthening foothold in various end markets and strategic initiatives to improve margins. From 2018 to 2022, the company expects organic revenue growth to be in the 3-5% range, operating margin to be in excess of 25% and earnings per share to grow 8-10% in each year. For 2018, the company anticipates GAAP earnings to be within $7.05-$7.25 per share, organic revenue growth to be 3-4% and operating margin to be 25-25.5%. The projections for 2017 have been reaffirmed, with earnings per share still anticipated to be $6.62-$6.72. However, the company is exposed to headwinds including unfavorable foreign currency movements, industry rivalry, volatilities in input price & supply and economic uncertainties.”

ITW has been the topic of several other reports. Argus reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $180.00 price objective (up from $160.00) on shares of Illinois Tool Works in a research report on Tuesday, October 24th. BMO Capital Markets increased their price objective on shares of Illinois Tool Works to $180.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Wednesday, December 6th. Credit Suisse Group dropped their price objective on shares of Illinois Tool Works from $142.00 to $140.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, October 24th. Royal Bank of Canada reissued a “sector perform” rating and issued a $155.00 price objective (up from $143.00) on shares of Illinois Tool Works in a research report on Friday, October 20th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, Citigroup reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $162.00 price objective on shares of Illinois Tool Works in a research report on Tuesday, September 26th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $166.13.

Shares of Illinois Tool Works (ITW) traded up $0.19 on Wednesday, hitting $166.15. 1,392,100 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 1,406,833. The company has a market capitalization of $56,780.00, a price-to-earnings ratio of 25.48, a PEG ratio of 2.28 and a beta of 1.18. Illinois Tool Works has a 52 week low of $120.06 and a 52 week high of $169.69. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.48, a current ratio of 2.41 and a quick ratio of 1.98.

Illinois Tool Works (NYSE:ITW) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Monday, October 23rd. The industrial products company reported $1.85 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.65 by $0.20. The company had revenue of $3.62 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.57 billion. Illinois Tool Works had a net margin of 16.12% and a return on equity of 47.21%. The company’s revenue was up 3.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $1.50 earnings per share. sell-side analysts expect that Illinois Tool Works will post 6.7 EPS for the current year.

In other Illinois Tool Works news, insider Roland M. Martel sold 64,818 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, December 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $167.41, for a total value of $10,851,181.38. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 26,222 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $4,389,825.02. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, insider Harold B. Smith sold 30,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, December 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $166.43, for a total transaction of $4,992,900.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders have sold 214,791 shares of company stock worth $34,665,964. 0.90% of the stock is owned by insiders.

A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in ITW. Janus Henderson Group PLC increased its holdings in Illinois Tool Works by 2,939.8% in the 2nd quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 3,752,155 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $537,498,000 after buying an additional 3,628,722 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. increased its holdings in Illinois Tool Works by 5.8% in the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 20,436,577 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $2,927,540,000 after buying an additional 1,118,381 shares during the period. Vaughan David Investments Inc. IL increased its holdings in Illinois Tool Works by 34,278.6% in the 3rd quarter. Vaughan David Investments Inc. IL now owns 939,568 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $35,779,000 after buying an additional 936,835 shares during the period. Koch Industries Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Illinois Tool Works by 31,484.3% in the 2nd quarter. Koch Industries Inc. now owns 768,131 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $763,000 after purchasing an additional 765,699 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC boosted its stake in shares of Illinois Tool Works by 100.8% in the 2nd quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 1,409,208 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $201,869,000 after purchasing an additional 707,287 shares in the last quarter. 74.70% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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About Illinois Tool Works

Illinois Tool Works Inc is a manufacturer of industrial products and equipment. The Company operates through seven segments. The Automotive OEM segment produces components and fasteners for automotive-related applications. The Food Equipment segment offers commercial food equipment. The Test & Measurement and Electronics segment produces test and measurement, and electronic manufacturing and maintenance, repair and operations (MRO) solutions.

Analyst Recommendations for Illinois Tool Works (NYSE:ITW)

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